LISTENER

Em Jay Reads

  • 35
  • reviews
  • 20
  • helpful votes
  • 37
  • ratings
  • The Murders in the Rue Morgue (Fort Raphael Publishing Company Edition)

  • By: Edgar Allan Poe
  • Narrated by: Kevin Theis
  • Length: 2 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11

The Murders in the Rue Morgue was first published in 1841 in Graham's Magazine and is the first of three stories to center around Dupin, who here explains his theory of "ratiocination", where a precise, logical, and unemotional examination of the facts will lead to the solution of a mystery...no matter how bizarre the conclusion.  

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Really brought to life

  • By Julie Garrett on 09-11-18

Enjoyable narration but book is not for me

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-05-18

I am giving this title an overall 5 stars because of the narration.
This is the first time I have listened/read anything by Edgar Allan Poe and this author is not for me.
It's a quick listen, with the story padded out by an introduction to Poe that I felt was unnecessary.
The narration is enthusiastic and exuberant.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • There You'll Be

  • Begin Again, Volume 1
  • By: Dawn Brower
  • Narrated by: Rose O'Toole
  • Length: 1 hr and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 21
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 21
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 20

Carly Gallagher doesn't make mistakes. Until one day she makes one that causes the death of someone she cares about. She would turn to the man she loves more than anything - if he were free to love her in return. Phillip Morrison's life turned upside down the moment he met Carly. Everything he thought was right turned out to be the exact opposite. He has to make a lot of choices, but one thing is clear: he loves Carly and he has to find a way to claim her.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Very entertaining and enjoyable

  • By Cyn on 12-03-17

Good narration. Story needs greater detail.

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-31-18

Rose O’Toole narrates this fast-paced short story. The narration is well paced; the voices and emotions are distinct. Rose’s male voices well suit the characters.

FBI Agent Carly Gallagher is reeling from the death of colleague and is feeling responsible. The one person she wants to turn to is her colleague Phillip Morrison but he is unavailable to her; the married type of unavailable.

A year down the track, (see? I told you it was fast paced), Phillip is no longer married and when Carly’s safety is threatened he is determined to protect her and together solve the mystery that resulted in their colleague’s death the year before.

The writing is pared down so you get a lot of action in a short period of time. There is no excess in this tightly woven story. So much so, that I had to re-listen to a portion of the book because things occurred too quickly. Our couple do get their HEA but it’s just a touch too fast for my liking. I would have liked to spend more time with Carly and Phillip once they got together.

  • Decadent Dreams

  • By: Nicole Garcia
  • Narrated by: Kai Kennicott, Wen Ross
  • Length: 10 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 272
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 261
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 260

My dreams haunt me. I feel as if I am falling into a pit of impending doom, but even that has not prepared me for the roller-coaster of emotions that flood over me when I'm near Phoenix. I have to keep my distance from her. I need to. It's the only thing I can do to keep from getting hurt again. Staying away from her proves to be a much harder task than I could have ever imagined. She's not only my assistant, but she's half my age.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Everything I want in a romance book 💕💕

  • By Mandymay💄👠👛 on 09-10-17

Engaging story. Excellent narration.

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-31-18

This book features dual narration by Wen Ross and Kai Kennicott. Not to take anything away from Kai, because she did a marvellous job in conveying Phe’s youthful yet spirited voice but yowsers! Wen Ross is the definition of decadent in this book.

The story kept me engaged throughout although I felt it could have been a touch shorter. At times I felt part of the character’s quirks were amplified and they came across as juvenile.

Overall there’s a happy balance between tenderness, humour and heat. Even with such an age difference between the lead characters, they are well suited.

The supporting cast of characters were well utilised, they added to the story and never overshadowed the main characters.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Managing the Bosses Box Set #1-3: Billionaire Romance

  • By: Lexy Timms
  • Narrated by: Hannah Pralle
  • Length: 11 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 475
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 431
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 430

Jamie Connors has given up on finding a man. Despite being smart, pretty, and just slightly overweight, she's a magnet for the kind of guys that don't stay around. Her sister's wedding is at the foreground of the family's attention. Jamie would be fine with it if her sister wasn't pressuring her to lose weight so she'll fit in the maid of honor dress, her mother would get off her case, and her ex-boyfriend wasn't about to become her brother-in-law. Determined to step out on her own, she accepts a PA position from billionaire Alex Reid....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • LOVED THIS SERIES.....

  • By Maria on 08-23-16

I found the story and narration lacking

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-31-18

Sadly, I struggled with these books both in terms of the story and the narration.

I found it difficult to connect with either of the main characters, in particular Jamie who comes across as somewhat of a doormat, especially when it comes to her family.

The narration by Hannah Pralle sounded dispassionate and bordered on the monotone for my ears.

One of the few redeeming parts of the books is that Lexy does know how to write good sex scenes.

  • Where Lemons Bloom

  • By: Blair McDowell
  • Narrated by: Alex Lee
  • Length: 7 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15

When Eve Anderson meets Adamo de Leone on a ship bound for Europe, she has no idea of the dark secret that will endanger both their lives. She accompanies him to his home on Italy's Amalfi Coast to open an inn left to him by his grandfather. But then she learns he spent five years in prison for a crime he claims he didn't commit. Could the man she loves be responsible for embezzling eighty million dollars from the investment firm he once owned?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Where Lemons Bloom

  • By MEDY L on 05-02-18

Great narration. Engaging & enjoyable story

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-28-18

I really enjoyed WHERE LEMONS BLOOM. It’s part romance, part mystery, and part travelogue. The story was entertaining but I never found it overtaxing or mired in angst given some of the more serious topics addressed.

I found the beginning quite fast. Many significant yet seemingly unrelated things happen at once with little exploration or explanation. However, it does not take long for the pacing to slow down and the story proceeds in a more balanced manner.

I loved the descriptions of Barbados and the Amalfi coast. It felt like I was right there with our characters. And the descriptions of food made me hungry! The issue of embezzled funds that saw Adamo in prison for several years, drives the story from location to location as he and Eve try to prove his innocence. The conclusion was satisfying and all loose ends were nicely tied up.

I thoroughly enjoyed Alex Lee’s narration. Her melodic voice was a pleasure to listen to, and she was able to well convey feelings and emotions as per story requirements. I am making the assumption she is English, and she does not hide this accent during the narration. Some might be put off by this given the majority of the characters are American, but I had no issues with this at all. In fact, it was pleasant change from the typical American voice I listen to on audio books.

  • Truly, Madly, Whiskey

  • By: Melissa Foster
  • Narrated by: Paul Woodson
  • Length: 9 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 93
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 86
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 85

A new, emotionally riveting, sexy standalone romance by New York Times best-selling author Melissa Foster. Watch mysteriously sexy Bear Whiskey claw his way to his happily-ever-after with sassy, rebellious Crystal Moon. Eight months is a long damn time to have the hots for a woman who keeps a guy at arm's length. But Crystal Moon is no ordinary woman. She's a sinfully sexy, sass-mouthed badass, and the subject of Bear Whiskey's midnight fantasies. She's also one of his closest friends.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • 3.5 STARS.. SACCHARIN SWEET, SEXY & DRAMA-LITE

  • By 🔹🔹🔹CAROLYN 🔹🔹🔹 on 04-25-17

Enjoyable narration. Interesting hero.

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-11-18

Paul Woodson has once again does a wonderful job narrating this second book in The Whiskeys series. I enjoy both his male and female voices and he conveys the character’s emotions very well.

TRULY, MADLY, WHISKEY was agreeable for the most part but it’s not as engaging a story as I hoped. There is very little action, which is not always a requirement, but I do expect a deep dive into characterisation in exchange and I feel this was lacking. The revelations that are meant to create tension and action within the book are mainly for the benefit of the main characters. We readers have already been told the back story and for us, it’s just a countdown until the reveal.

I liked Bear. I found him to be the most interesting character, especially the dynamics between him and his family, but I have to admit there’s a part of me that does not understand his overwhelming attraction and devotion to Crystal.

  • Sometimes You Win

  • The Sometimes Series, Book 1
  • By: Stacy Eaton
  • Narrated by: Julie Walters, Gene Branson
  • Length: 4 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16

Haley Rosewood's life has never been easy, especially not with a class-A jerk for a boss and a marketing job that barely pays her enough to provide a roof over her daughter's head and food for the table. Every day is a struggle, and the thought of being romantically involved with anyone is a dream she doesn't dare indulge. Devon Carrington is the type of man to give the shirt off his back to anyone in need, and when he finds Haley struggling through a bad day, he does everything he can. In return, he asks that she help him pick out lottery numbers and tells her she gets half.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Enjoyable Listen

  • By Jan M on 04-20-18

A charming story with enjoyable narration

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-01-18

3.5 stars

How would you react after winning a life-changing amount of money on the lottery? This is the situation Devon Carrington and Haley Rosewood find themselves experiencing in SOMETIMES YOU WIN by Stacy Eaton.

Devon Carrington works in the same building as Haley Rosewood and after he helps her out of a workplace predicament, he and Haley begin to date. Well, according to Devon they’re dating. Haley is unsure what he sees in her. There are several avoidable miscommunications that keep the couple apart but the overall story has an enjoyable Cinderella-ish theme that makes it work. It’s not overly long – the audiobook time is 4 hours 19 minutes – but there’s a complete story with no loose ends in this book with a happy for now ending. At the time of writing this review, books 2 and 3 in the Sometimes series are already published, including the audiobooks.

Julie Walters and Gene Branson both do a good job of this dual narration book. Their male and female voices are pleasing to listen to, and the varied emotions are conveyed well. This is the first time I’ve listened to these narrators and I would happily listen to other works they have narrated.





  • Treasure in Exile

  • Palmyrton Estate Sale Mystery Series, Book 4
  • By: S.W. Hubbard
  • Narrated by: Janelle Tedesco
  • Length: 8 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 58
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 53
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 52

After her husband's plane goes down in a WWII battle, a poor nurse becomes the wealthiest widow in town. And she never leaves her mansion for 70 years. When estate sale organizer Audrey Nealon enters the Tate Mansion after the widow's death, she discovers nothing's been changed since the day the house was built. Why did the heiress and her maid eat canned soup and read used paperbacks surrounded by magnificent art and antiques? Why were the house and its contents bequeathed to a small local charity?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • very enjoyable series

  • By J. Ricks on 05-24-18

Well narrated. An engaging mystery.

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-12-18

Treasure in Exile was my first Palmyrton Estate Sale Mystery and I really enjoyed it. While the books feature recurring characters, I did not feel lost by not having read the earlier books.

I enjoyed the plotting and pace of the story. I can’t recall ever reading about an estate sale organiser who falls into sleuthing courtesy of the job, but it works. Audrey’s enjoyment of her work comes through the narrative and her desire to solve the mysteries she stumbles across comes from a genuine desire to learn the truth.

The mystery in this book is not one I would ever have guessed the solution to. It was a well woven story and brings insight into past rules of society and how they impact people today.

I enjoyed Janelle Tedesco’s narration. The tone, pacing and emotion were all done extremely well. Each character had their own voice, and I particularly enjoyed the character of Ty. He was a lot of fun even though it’s obvious his life has not been the easiest.

  • Tru Blue

  • By: Melissa Foster
  • Narrated by: Paul Woodson
  • Length: 7 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 225
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 207
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 208

There's nothing Truman Gritt won't do to protect his family - including spending years in jail for a crime he didn't commit. When he's finally released, the life he knew is turned upside down by his mother's overdose, and Truman steps in to raise the children she's left behind. Truman's hard, he's secretive, and he's trying to save a brother who's even more broken than he is. He's never needed help in his life, and when beautiful Gemma Wright tries to step in, he's less than accepting.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Just not for me...

  • By Andrea Cleghorn on 12-06-16

Great narration. Sweet story.

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-06-18

Well, I try not to judge a book by its cover, but holy exploding ovaries, people! Just look at it!!! It’s sigh worthy. Is it any wonder that Gemma fell for Truman?

The book is an overall light read, something that surprised me given the heavy topics addressed: imprisonment, drug addiction and death. I think the topics were handled sensitively without having the story spiral downwards into a pool of angst.

I found the romance between Truman and Gemma to be quite smooth sailing, with most of the drama coming from external sources. In addition to getting to know one another, they learned to rely on each other; something neither felt comfortable doing with others. Truman was my favourite character. His steadfastness and commitment to his family never wavered.

I have no idea why, but I enjoy romance audiobooks narrated solely by men, and Paul Woodson does a great job in bringing Truman to life. The tone and pacing were spot on and his female voice was pleasant to listen to.

  • Last Words

  • A Diary of Survival
  • By: Shari J. Ryan
  • Narrated by: Stephanie Willis, Susan Larkin, Chris Kayser
  • Length: 10 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 32
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28

Amelia - 1942: The inside of my closet held the last bit of my freedom before I was torn from my home and shoved onto a dark train. Our destination was even darker. "Women and children to the right. Men to the left," they shouted at us. Everything was taken from me, leaving only the smoke-filled air, piercing screams, and soul-burning cries. I was slowly starved and weakened to the bone, but there was a man - a Nazi - who brought me extra food. He called himself a prisoner too, but he scared me, and I wondered if he was the enemy I should fear the most.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Entertaining. Educational. Hopeful.

  • By Em Jay Reads on 05-19-18

Entertaining. Educational. Hopeful.

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-19-18

Stephanie Willis, Susan Larkin, Chris Kayser narrated Last Words: A Diary of Survival, and they did an excellent job. The tone and pacing was excellent, the characters all sounded their age and the narration was packed with emotion. I was immersed from the start, and really, what else could you want from an audiobook?

Amelia’s story...well, what can you say? It’s heartbreaking, touching, moving. The story is not a comfortable one, but I can imagine the reality was much worse than described. As Amelia’s past is revealed, the book moves between the past and the present. In the present time, Amelia is a 92 year old woman who is dying. Her granddaughter Emma is tasked with reading Amelia’s secret diary about her experiences during WWII.

The present time is portrayed in a much lighter tone and includes a romance for Emma. As enjoyable as this part of the story was, it felt more of a “fluff piece” that took away from Amelia’s story. There just seemed to more there that we are not told.

Overall, I highly recommend this audiobook. It’s entertaining. It’s educational. It’s hopeful.